SALOMON QST STELLA 106
Lengths: 159, 167, 174
More info: salomon.com
"The Salomon QST Stella 106 is a great ski to get your powder legs on, and will help take an intermediate skier to the next level. It was light and manoeuvrable, absorbed crud and bumps, handled well in trees, had great flotation, and was stiff enough to lean on my edges. From resort days to slackcountry missions to intermediate backcountry outings, it would serve as an ideal do-everything ski for the skier who wants just one setup for everything. The Stella did leave a bit to be desired on piste, as with a low turn radius and a lot of rocker in the tip I found it challenging to rail big turns on at high speed. But at 106 millimetres underfoot, that’s like trying to put baby in the corner, since it’s a solid women’s freeride ski for all ability types." —Jessica Leahey
Reviewer’s Rating: On Piste: 7/10 • Off Piste: 8/10
Average Rating: On Piste: 7/10 • Off Piste: 7/10
Age: 35 / Height: 5’8” / Weight: 140 lbs / Occupation: Visual Artist
The most creative of our testers, Jessica Leahey’s skills with a paintbrush are just as sharp as her edges (as seen in issue 6.1 of Forecast). As one of the rare people savvy enough to make a living in the arts, she notes her hours are gobbled up quickly by studio projects, and that her time on snow is precious. As such, she craves steep and deep turns, and has no time to waste on a ski that doesn’t deliver. Her daily driver has a rocker-camber-rocker profile, is 108 millimetres underfoot, and 172 centimetres in length. She’ll bump all the way up to 179 centimetres for pow, and prefers a longer turn radius when it’s deep, ranging from 19 to 21 metres. Her most revered gear, though, includes her heart-shaped sunglasses and faux fur top—which drastically improve her performance in everything from hot-lap pow to spring corn.